Does higher ed suffer from failure to adapt?
- Massive layoffs at the University of Chicago are an indicator of a growing problem in higher education: a failure to find revenue and support from unconventional sources.
- Boyers said capital enhancement is an antiquated system of student recruitment and engagement, and ultimately raises the cost of a college degree without increasing its value.
- As technology and industry change, classic curriculum and teaching methods are becoming obsolete in professional training and exposure.
Boyers makes good points about the mismatch of industry and education, particularly as many experts are suggesting the nation’s technological explosion has yet to reach its apex. But his ideas are devoid of the notion that higher education itself is a major industry, and while it is a sub-industry to larger cultures of manufacturing, social services and the arts, communities and states still depend on certain levels of performance and growth to drive local economies.
College presidents must make legislative engagement and industrial monitoring their top priority as institutional executives. Now and in the future, it will be the top job of officials to know the directions cities and states are pursuing to generate revenue, and to position institutions as partners in that movement.
The need for workforce training and professional certificate programs will increase just as the need for more four-year degrees will, and schools must remain ahead of trends with research and training to stay competitive.